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Parent Says Reform Needed For Court-Ordered Substance Abuse Treatment13:45
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Officials estimate there were 1,256 opioid overdose deaths in Massachusetts in 2014 alone. (Rich Pedroncelli/AP)
Officials estimate there were 1,256 opioid overdose deaths in Massachusetts in 2014 alone. (Rich Pedroncelli/AP)
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Section 35 is a legal process that allows relatives, or others, to go to court and commit someone to addiction treatment. Yet many who have used the process say there are not enough treatment beds to go around and even if someone does get a bed, they often don't stay long enough.

There's currently a lawsuit against the state because women who can't be accommodated at a treatment center are sent to the state prison in Framingham. State officials are promising to reform the law.

Guests

Annemarie Whilton, used Section 35 to bring her daughter to recovery.

Dr. Joseph Shrand, medical director of CASTLE and instructor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical school. He tweets @DrJoeShrand.

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WBUR: State Looks To Reform Handling Of Involuntary Commitments For Substance Abuse

  • "Plymouth District Court Judge Rosemary Minehan, a member of Gov. Charlie Baker’s opioid task force, says Section 35 requests to her court have gone from about 5,800 four years ago to 7,500 in the past year. 'The volume is extremely high,' Minehan said. 'Just this week we had seven on Monday and five on Tuesday. Those are high numbers. We never used to see that many numbers coming in in this court.' "

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